Friday, 23 May 2014


                                         Second cut of rough being mown at the 10th on the
                                         medal with our new seven deck articulator rotary mower.
                                          The Amazone flail mower cutting the deeper rough
                                           between the 1st and 18th on the medal.

Monday, 19 May 2014


Montrose Golf Links Limited is committed to keeping the environmental footprint that is produced in relation to the maintenance of the golf courses to a minimum. One area that caused concern was the machinery wash down area. In the past all waste water together with oil, fuel and other residues were simply allowed to drain away into the surrounding ground.
  After looking into the different options it was decided to install a reed bed filtration system. Construction started in 2009. The principal behind this is that there are a series of small lined reed beds, the contaminated water is fed into the top bed and through gravity drains into successive beds. Almost all plants that live with its roots in water has the capability to transport oxygen down to its roots. This oxygen helps feed the bacteria which digest many of the pollutants which might otherwise contaminate the eco system.
  The only downside to this system with regards to our site was that because the area around our sheds is so flat we had to build the reed beds into a man made mound  in order to allow the water to drain into each bed in succession. This meant we required a small pump to get the water from the wash bay to the highest reed bed.

The wash bay.

The reed bed under construction.

Another photo of the reed bed under construction.

A recent photo taken from the top reed bed.

A recent photo of the reed bed system taken from below.


One of the best sights, and a sign that spring has arrived, is that of the skylark. At this time of year their song can be heard all over the links. They can be heard high in the sky while they are hovering and performing their display flight. They can also often be seen on the ground either in the rough or on the courses fairways.   It is a small streaky brown bird with a crest often visible on its head, especially during courtship season. The wings also have a white rear edge that is visible in flight. They nest on the ground in the thick uncut rough normally under a large tuft of grass with the nest being lined with fine grass and hair.  They start to lay in late April / early May and there are normally between 2 and 6 eggs in a clutch.

Skylark in the rough on the Broomfield course.

Skylarks nest - on the Broomfield course.

Skylarks nest with chicks - on the Medal course.

  The skylark is on the RSPB Red list which means,  it is globally threatened, there has been historical population decline during 1800 and 1985,  there has been a severe (at least a 50%) decline in the UK breeding population over the last 25 years, and there has been a severe (at least a 50%) reduction in the UK breeding range over the last 25 years.
 So the fact that good numbers, together with the many breeding pairs which we have on the links is a good indication that the diverse types and length of grassland that we manage , and leave unmanaged for that matter, are having a positive impact on these threatened birds.

 The month of May sees a number of different wild plants on the links in full flower, a few of which can be seen below.

Violets growing next to the practice area.

Lady's smock growing on the banking of the
burn that crosses the Broomfield course.

A close up of Field mouse-ear taken to the left of
10th Medal green.

Bluebells growing close to the greenkeepers sheds.

Next month I will show an example of the work that has been undertaken to help showcase the life that can be seen on the golf courses. I will also feature another bird that can be seen on the links.
Les Rae
First Assistant
Montrose Golf Links Limited